Sunday, March 29, 2009

Changes coming to Oil Country?

With the Oilers in the middle of a playoff dogfight could the jobs of almost the entire organization be on the line? Sounds a little bit ridiculous but the scuttlebutt around town is that it could come down to a playoff birth, and that might not even be enough. Fans of this organization have been looking for change somewhere for a couple of years now and they started with a new owner last year. When Darryl Katz took over this team he made an agreement to keep everyone there for at least one year and that year is nearly up. There have been talk and I've been told by someone close to the former head of the EIG Cal Nichols that his leave of abscence is not temperary but in fact he is now done with the Edmonton Oilers. Whispers in/around the Edmonton business community are that Katz will be at least clearing out the upper echelons of the organization(ie. Patrick LaForge and co.) but also if the Oilers do not make the playoffs that management on the hockey side may go as well. Quite frankly I'd be a little dissapointed in Katz if he fired the new GM as Tambellini hasn't really been given a fair shake at running this show. He should be given at least 3 more years as most GM's get around five years to show their wares(unless your Kevin Lowe of course who get's a decade of chances and still can't learn to draft properly) although I'd be fine with clearing out the rest of the hockey department and letting Tambellini bring in his own people. Now the coaching staff is something that make the playoffs or not, that must go. In the span of one week the teams star player calls out the coaching staff(with his "I'm becoming a checker comments probably being aimed at MacT) and I've been told by family friends of some of the players that MacT has completely lost the dressing room, although that's become pretty obvious with their continued erratic play down the stretch. With Nashville, St.Louis and Anaheim all stringing numerous wins together at the end here and the Oilers going win-lose-win-lose I just can't see the Oilers making the playoffs and for the sake of the organization and the fans that Katz does what it necessary for the team going forward and brings in a swath of new people and a new direction that this club so desperately needs.

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